MIAMI — Amed Rosario is staying patient — even though he feels ready for prime time.
In a pregame interview prior to the 2017 All-Star Futures game, Rosario declared himself “100 percent ready” to play in the big leagues, but added that he’s happy to wait until his opportunity presents itself.
“I don’t focus on that,” Rosario said. “What’s important to me is going out there, playing every day, and focusing on the task at hand.”
While Rosario isn’t concerning himself with rumors of being called-up to the big leagues in the near future, he is confident he’ll succeed once he’s there. During the game, the Mets’ top prospect wore cleats with the message “Don’t Be Surprised” on one cleat and “Be Ready” on the other.
“That’s not a message to the Mets,” Rosario told MLB Network through a translator. “It’s more for the fans. Be ready when you come see me. I’m going to perform well. I’m going to do my best. So don’t be surprised, be ready when you come see Amed Rosario play.”
Rosario struck out in both of his at-bats, but did make a slick backhanded play on defense for the World Team on Sunday at Marlins Park.
He batted third and started at shortstop for the World Team. Rosario, 21, is hitting .327/.365/.474 with seven homers, 52 RBIs, 16 doubles, seven triples and 16 steals in 83 games for Triple-A Las Vegas.
“There’s room to improve on everything — my defense and my offense,” said Rosario, who hails from the Dominican Republic. “I work on it every day.”
Jose Reyes has been serving as Rosario’s mentor. The two talked on Saturday, and Reyes said he was expecting big things from Rosario on Sunday. “I was MVP, hit a triple, a bases-loaded triple,” Reyes said. “It was a great time. Now it’s his time, and I hope he has a great game.”
Reyes, who Rosario has looked up to since he was young, and Asdrubal Cabrera have been playing shortstop for the Mets.
Rosario responded “not really” when asked if it was hard to think about Reyes currently blocking him at short, and the possibility of eventually replacing his mentor.
“I’m happy to know that the person I look up to and mentors me is still playing,” Rosario said. “Whenever my time is, I’m going to be ready. While he’s there, he’s there.”
Rosario struck out on a nasty off-speed pitch from Rays prospect Brent Honeywell in the first inning. He got ahead in the count 3-0 in the fourth, but struck out on a 96-mph high fastball from Tigers prospect Beau Burrows.
In the third, he ranged to his right and made a nice backhanded play at short before throwing to White Sox super prospect Yoan Moncada at second for the force.
Rosario went 1-for-2 with a run scored in the All-Star Futures Game last season. He entered Sunday’s game ranked as the No. 3 overall prospect in all of baseball, according to MLB.com.
“It’s an honor for me to be here representing the World, but I just take it like last year,” Rosario said. “It’s an opportunity for me to shine. I don’t take it as being a step closer. It’s just an opportunity to here representing the World.”